Wednesday, February 13, 2008

None of yo' beeswax...

The icicles are talking today.

The rain came yesterday, and left ice today. Ice has great tone. Especially when it drips into a puddle. It's a pure, cold, chilly sound. A reminder to breathe in, and gather the air.

But ice aside, let's talk business. It's important. And I'll make a bold assertation. It's fun. This might sound strange to all you fellow musicians. We're into music so we don't have to be stuck at a desk, right? Actually, I will venture to say that it's not only in our best interest to be savvy when it comes to matters material, but it's vital.

The world of successful people know how to communicate, access resources, and understand the situation. Being a good businessperson doesn't always mean wearing a suit and tie. It does mean being with it, alert, and willing to learn.

I'm really enjoying learning about the business of music. It's fascinating. You have a product: Your music (and entertainment.) You have a potential fan base: The whole world! You need to get it to them. How are you going to do that?

Just playing great tunes isn't enough. If you invent something brilliant, how can it be successful if people don't know about it?

And, of course, there's folks who will offer to do this for you. If they're legit, that's great. If they're not, watch out. If you develop a head for business, you'll be able to sort it out and make good calls.

It's a challenge, and a game. How are you going to get your music to the masses? Well, first you need to understand how the machine works. "All You Need to Know About The Music Business" is a nice book to aid in understanding it.

And understanding the world that the industry functions in is also important. Learn about business! I just registered as an Limited Liability Company (LLC.) Did you know that Maryland has a $300 filing fee for taxes every year. I did not. D'oh! (And I even read a book on LLCs!)

The science of Customer Service is a fascinating field, indeed. I'm always working on that with my teaching practice. It, of course, carries over to the playing side of my business, from dealing with club owners, right on down to the little kid that drops a dollar in the bucket when I'm doing street music. The guys at Gold's Gym amaze me by always greeting me by my name. I'm sure they have a computer to help 'em, but still...It makes a big impression.

Hey, is your gear insured? Mine is! Now, if it gets stolen, or somebody burns down my studio, I'm covered. (By the way, I had a great customer service experience with an agent named Ted Peters at Wells Fargo. Let me know if you want his number, and I'll email it to you.)

Jump in to the world of business. It's really, really fun. Really.

And when you don't think musicians ever look corporate, just remember these guys...

Musician's Friend Stupid Deal of the Day